Groundwater Contamination Case Study

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The amount of soil and groundwater contamination is enormous. There are many documented cases of groundwater contamination in Australia and all other parts of the world. Experience from Europe and North America suggests that it will become a serious problem in the future.

Groundwater is water below the earths surface. Groundwater contamination occurs when man made products like oil, gasoline and fertilisers get into the groundwater and causes it to become unsafe for human use. Ground water makes up over 95 percent of the Australia 's fresh water resources, and is the drinking water source for more than half the population in this country. Many parts of Australia rely purely on groundwater as their source of water. (EPA, 1996).
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The size and shape of the nano-particles can be controlled by adjusting the pH level, ionic strength, temperature, or the Fe(II|)/Fe(II) ratio.

Since early 1990s, the iron corrosion chemistry has been put into productive use when treating toxic chemicals. The environmental chemistry of metallic or zero valent iron has been extensively documented. Contaminants such as as tetrachloroethene (C2 Cl4), can readily accept the electrons from iron oxidation and be reduced to ethene gas in accordance with the following stoichiometry (EPA, 2003):

C2Cl4 +4Fe +4H →C2H4 +4Fe +4Cl

Research has found that although iron nano-particles remediate contaminants well, they tend to form a mass group in soil or water. In response, carbon nano-particles and water-soluble polyelectrolytes are used to support iron nano-particles. The hydrophobic contaminants adsorb to these supports, improving permeability in soil. (Wei-xian Zhang, 2003, pg. 324,
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and Knight, S. (2001). Inland Waters, Australia State of the Environment Report 2001 (Theme Report): Water quality and sources of pollution (Response: Management of groundwater pollution). [online] Available at: [Accessed 5 Mar. 2015].
EPA, (1996). Ground Water Cleanup at Superfund Sites | Superfund | US EPA. [online] Available at: [Accessed 5 Mar. 2015].
Kandpal, N., Sah, N., Loshali, R., Joshi, R. and Prasad, J. (2014). Co-precipitation method of synthesis and characterization of iron oxide nanoparticles. Journal of Scientific & Industrial Research, 73, pp.87-90.
N/A, (2015). Groundwater Foundation. [online] Available at: [Accessed 5 Mar. 2015].
Nanoiron, (2014). In-situ technology of groundwater remedation with the use of Fe(0) nanoparticles. [online] Nanoiron. Available at: [Accessed 5 Mar. 2015].
Slunský, J. (2015). Production of Zero-Valent Iron nanoparticles (nZVI) for in-situ groundwater remidation including remedation experience.
Zhang, W. (2003). Journal search results - Cite This For Me. Journal of Nanoparticle Research, 5(3/4),

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